Just because you're paying Seth Rollins to train you, it doesn't mean he's going to take it easy on you.
Zicky Dice learned that firsthand. Due to his band Heart To Heart, he already had a friendship with WWE's Rollins upon deciding to get into pro wrestling five years ago. Rollins wasn't the only one, but as Dice recalls, he earned his stripes, and Rollins' respect.
"I’ve had friends call me recently and say, “Hey, I have to apologize.” I said, “For what?” He said, “I told people behind your back that I thought that you would fall face first in this business. You’ve proved me and everybody else wrong.” I said, “Well, that’s a shitty thing to tell somebody, but, hey. Thank you for apologizing.” It’s true, and Seth Rollins will tell you himself that he thought that I was gonna bullshit my way through this. As I won the title, he said, “You know what? I’m proud of you.” That meant a lot to me. I never thought that I would hear that from him. Especially when he thought I was gonna bullshit my way through this. But, I went to Black & Brave [Wrestling Academy] and I set the bar for all the other students to go there because that’s what I want to do, I want to set the bar. Come and get it. Everything I’ve done has been so easy. It hasn’t been simple, but it’s been so easy. You just have to fucking work and bust your ass," Dice told us.
Dice got into wrestling late, and it was actually that aforementioned music career that led to him trying his hand at another form of entertainment.
"We were on tour when I was in Nashville, Tennessee and I was acting like a jackoff on stage. We were getting booed in between songs and the crowd’s singing along, so they’re still interacting. I’m getting booed in between songs, talking trash. I’m just playing the heel on stage. Tour manager’s like, “I gotta talk to you after the show.” I was like, “Aw, I’m about to get kicked off the tour.” He’s like, “Hey, you’re agile, you’re athletic, you love professional wrestling. You’re oozing with charisma. I think you need to go train. I think you need to go become a professional wrestler.” I sat there and said, “Hmm.” He’s like, “I think you could be very successful in this business.” That is my brother John James Ryan, Jr. who told me that and I texted Seth Rollins immediately, because I had met Seth through the music scene and through touring and said, “Hey. I want you to train me.” He said, “Ha-ha-ha. Are you serious?” I said, “Yes, I’m gonna be better than you are one day.” He said, “I’ll see you May 1st.'"
This video is way too long but go check out the kid. He’s hustlin. https://t.co/zZcqS238Wc— Seth Rollins (@WWERollins) August 29, 2019
But Black and Brave is in the midwest. Zicky Dice was in California. That didn't matter. Dice was determined, and around the time Rollins was becoming a megastar in WWE, he was helping Dice learn the basics.
"That was five years ago," Dice told Fightful. "So, five years ago I would have been one month into training. I packed up my shit, moved from Central Coast, California to [Moline, Illinois], where I’d never been, surrounded by tornado sirens and cornfields. Graduated from the third class of the Black & Brave Wrestling Academy. What was cool about that whole experience is I was at WrestleMania 31. I watched him cash in. It was two weeks later I moved to start training with the current WWE Champion. So, I’m one of twelve in the world that can say they trained with him when he first won the title. There were other students the second time around, sure, but I was in the first batch, okay?"
You can see our full interview with Zicky Dice above, and check him out on Twitch.